Tag Archives: God

**The Road To 27** Post 6 of 7 – God

Despite what anybody says or believes, God (YAWEH, the same God of Israel that worked in the Holy Bible as well as today) is the reason I am here.

Point blank. No argument. It just is. I can never show enough gratitude for that.

While some people spend their time wrestling with the questions “Well why do we have to serve Him anyway?” — “Are we mere slaves?” — “Surely there must be a higher purpose for us than that?”

— I spend my time walking with The Holy Spirit, praising God for being Who He is and the wonderful blessings He’s bestowed upon my life.

DAY 6Since my 20th birthday, I have learned to spend the first part of my special day praying it in before I do anything else. I am humble enough (and will continue to be) to know that without God breathing life in me, I wouldn’t be able to do or enjoy anything else. He is the reason I breathe. He is the reason I have been blessed with great parents. He is the reason I have family and friends to enjoy my time with, He is the reason I have a job, He is the reason for literally EV-ER-Y-THING in my life and on this earth. My birthday is not a time to celebrate myself, but to celebrate the God that made this life; and it’s a GREAT feeling to know that even though God doesn’t physically ask, “Jocelyn, did you notice all that I’ve done for you? It would be nice if you thanked Me ya know, just a little gratitude.” , He doesn’t have to ask me! I will give thanks to Him freely when that dial hits 12:00 AM (If I’m not asleep, ya’ll know I go to sleep early lol)

I never in a billion gagillion zaphillion years would’ve thought I’d be a this point in my Christ walk at THIS age!

See, I had this plan growing up right:

Step #1 Do all my dirt and sinning while I was young

Step #2 Slow down in my 30s

Step #3 Completely stop in my 40s and share my testimony

Step #4 Become a old mother in the church and tell kids about how it was when I was young

I lie to you not! This is exactly the foolery that my old wayward self used to come up with! But Christ stepped in there and hit me with the Dikembe Mutombo like “No No No — I didn’t die so you can willingly keep living in sin! Not in My house!”

I’ll admit, it’s a little embarrassing to know that it took so many warnings to get me on the right track, but I’m glad God sent them! At the rate I was going, I wouldn’t have made it to 25 ANYWAY! God did some fast acting, put Jesus on the play and sent The Holy Spirit in to take it to the hole for a slam dunk! And BOY did He score! Here I am, coming upon 27 years old, with a further understanding of Christ than most people my age, and I count that an honor and a blessing!

When I finally turned back on the right path, I took a cue from Solomon and began praying for godly wisdom. It’s something I continue to pray for even now. And you know what, I’m so thankful that the Holy Bible was left here for us, because if I didn’t have that to look back on, I would be flubbing us this life all to pieces.

Nevertheless here I am, just hours away from my 27th birthday and I’m excited and grateful! God is wonderful, and amazing, and all of the above!

Hey…..I’m almost 27 ya’ll!

#NawlinsJoc

Photo shot and edited by Rich Griffis (www.richgriffis.com)

[photo by Rich Griffis ]

1 Comment

Filed under Dear Diary, It's Me Joc

**The Road To 27** Post 5 of 7 – Health

I know health is an awkward thing to reflect on the week of your birthday, but hey, it’s something that’s important to me!

From the second I was conceived, I battled and fought to have a healthy life. When my mom was in her last trimester, doctors could see that something “wasn’t right” with me. In the eighties, technology wasn’t as advanced as it is now, so basically all they could do was speculate.

On the day of my birth, it was discovered that I had a massive brain tumor that prevented a large portion of my skull from forming. To make things even more perplexing, I was the first case in US history to have a brain tumor connected to ANOTHER arachnoid cyst, which rested in my throat. Doctors were flown in from overseas and it was predicted that IF I survived the first day or so, I would be nothing more than a common vegetable. After not being able to even HOLD me after I was birthed, those doctors sat there and told my parents (as I lie in the UNC Chapel Hill Hospital NICU) that I would never walk, I would never learn to speak, and that I would never to be able to do anything more than stare up as they faced a lifetime of changing, feeding, and cleaning me. Can you IMAGINE how that felt?!

Needless to say, I’m here typing this blog, so OBVIOUSLY God had much better plans for me! I am so thankful for praying parents and family!

As I grew, I was in and out of the hospital for check ups, maintenance, and a few other minor things (given the enormity of my first diagnosis) — but other than a few tussles with asthma, I was as good as gold!

One thing always rested heavily on my mind though….would I be healthy enough to ever have my OWN children?

DAY 5

If you have met me over the past 10 years, you would probably think of me as a head strong, determined, career oriented, “I can do bad all by myself” type person. The truth is, that’s not at all who I am. My number one goal/desire in life (and always have been) was to be a wife and mother (emphasis on the mother part). I am still striving daily to advance in life and excel in a career that makes me happy, but it doesn’t take the place of family. To be honest, I am totally find with being a housewife and working from home if it means I can spend more time with my future kids. One issue with that according to my neonatal surgeons…. is that the shunt doctors wired throughout my body runs through the entire length of my torso — thus on paper, make it risky to carry a baby.

Let me stop right here and say that though I’ve battled suppressing these negative thoughts throughout life, I have learned to lean on God in faith through Jesus Christ my Savior who made it possible for me to even come to God’s majestic throne and ASK for a miracle. So whatever God’s will for my life is, I believe wholeheartedly, that it will include me being a mother SOME WAY, some how. Ok…now back to the reflection…

Toxic thoughts began to knock at the doors of my mind at an early age saying “Who is going to marry someone who needs so much medical care?” and “What man will want a woman who can’t bare children?” and “If you want someone, you’ll have to settle.”, and “You might as well just cope with being single forever, because it isn’t medically possible or safe for you to have your own children.” — the lies continued on and on.

Up until my first year out of college, I was able to keep thinking positive as I rose above those negative thoughts and denied them access into my psyche. But after a brief bout will illness in 2011, these thoughts exploded back onto the scene with a vengeance. I would literally sit in my room and cry….just cry. All those terrible “doctor’s predictions” came knocking louder as anger tried to rest in my heart as I witnessed these hoodrat chicks (just being real here folks) and TODDLERS pop out babies they didn’t take care of or didn’t even really want. I even found myself getting upset at some of my friends who’d had babies out of wedlock — because here they were venting to me about the struggles of having a child, when I would GLADLY take on that struggle if it meant being a wife and a mother. (those feelings are now gone by the way)

It’s taken some years, but now — here upon year 27 — I’m on the path to continued healthy living! Emotionally and physically. I am trying to keep my weight down…I’m adopting new exercise plans…and I’m focusing on healthy eating. I have now resolved those emotional issues that once plagued me (and work at it daily), I haven’t had any serious health problems (and I don’t plan to) and most importantly, I realize that whatever man I marry will have to accept me for my past, where I am in my present, and be willing to create a future together with me — however and whenever we are blessed with our children.  ❤

#NawlinsJoc

Photo shot and edited by Rich Griffis (www.richgriffis.com)

[photo by Rich Griffis ]

Leave a comment

Filed under Dear Diary, It's Me Joc

Phil Robertson’s Response to “being let go”

This was Phil’s response to being let go!
Robertson has issued a statement in response:

“I myself am a product of the 60s; I centered my life around sex, drugs and rock and roll until I hit rock bottom and accepted Jesus as my Savior. My mission today is to go forth and tell people about why I follow Christ and also what the bible teaches, and part of that teaching is that women and men are meant to be together.

“However, I would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me. We are all created by the Almighty and like Him, I love all of humanity. We would all be better off if we loved God and loved each other.”

 

Very well said.

– Joc

Leave a comment

Filed under The Christian Life

Christians Can Meditate Too!

I know this may seem super random but I just now, honestly absorbed the true meaning of scriptures like Joshua 1:8 that reads, “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”(KJV)  and Psalm 1:2 that says, “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.”(KJV)

For example. At least once every month, it seems as though a negative person from my past passes my path whether it’s in my hometown, online, at a mutual friend’s gathering, or even while out of town. For awhile the first thought that popped into my head was, “Ohhh Lord! Really?! I gotta deal with THIS clown?!” But about a year and a half ago, I actually started make it a point to Google scriptures that spoke to what I was feeling. So the next time I saw that negative person from the past, I had a scripture on hand to calm me down. Or if I was having a hard day at work I’d say a passage or two to myself that spoke to the stress I was feeling. Or I’d go home to look up what the Bible said about healing and how to live a prosperous life.

Today is the day that it finally hit me….I was doing was “meditating”! Meditating on God’s word (to be exact) and it was having a positive influence in my life! 

I’m pretty sure everyone, like me, thought at one time meditating only applied to folks like Tina Turner whenever she converted to Buddhism; but when you take a moment to think about, meditating is simply saying the same thing over and over again until it gets into your subconscious.

The same applied to me when I kept saying those Bible scriptures over and over. I’m at the point now where I can be feeling myself getting overwhelmed by whatever is going on during my day, and immediately recalling and “chanting” a scripture that applies to peace or joy. By doing that, I’m able to focus more on what God’s word says and less on the stress or fear or anger that’s trying to claim my mind – thus making me a happier, calmer Joc!

 phil_419It’s wild!! I know some of you folks that have been saved for a billion years may be thinking, “Well DUH Joc. The scripture lays it out plain and clear what meditating is?!” Well I’m not ashamed to say, it took me actually EXPERIENCING it to finally understand it.

So for all the Christians who want to know how to put ‘mind over matter’ and posess the power to make every day the best it can be think of meditating like this: 

STEP 1 – Google or research different scriptures that speak on things like “peace, joy, health, wisdom, fear, pain, etc” and write it down somewhere. It helps if you chose ones that are like 1-3 sentences. It’s easier to remember.

STEP 2 – Take one verse and make the commitment to read it every day for a week. At the end of the week, see if you can recall it without having to look down at your paper or look it up in the Bible.

STEP 3 – Do this with each verse and keep adding on. So for example, by the end of Week #2, you should be able to recall the verse you learned in Week #1 IN ADDITION to the one you just learned in Week #2.

STEP 4 – Once you run out of verses. Start over or look up new ones. Whenever something negative or bad happens during your day (stress, sickness, jealous coworkers, mean boss, troublesome kids, etc) see if you can recall that scripture. Keep saying it over and over again until you calm down.

STEP 5 – Repeat.

I’m telling you, if you’re really serious about it and want to improve your Christian walk, doing this will save you from beating a lot of folks tails, cussing out a many of coworkers, and staying sane when trials come.

– Joc

ps. I’ll come back and correct the typos later. haha

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Joc's Observations, Quotes To Live By, The Christian Life

At This Point In My Life, I Don’t Have Time To Play….

Today I came across a tweetgram that my good friend and author Peaches Dean posted on her page.

peach

When I read this, the wheels in my brain started to turn. I began to ask myself questions like…

“Can you identify with this?” “Who in your life has essentially taken up valuable time?”

“Have YOU beaten around the bush with a friend, in a relationship, or with a colleague?”

When the questions finally stopped rolling I had some time to absorb and drum up a few answers.

I can totally identify with Peaches’ sentiments and because I know her personally, I know that she is speaking straight from the core. The core group of people I run with all have goals…not just dreams to fantasize about day in and day out. We make them goals to set and to be obtained. Even if we have to take baby steps – at the end of the day, we know we’ll get where we need to be. Not trying to be a dream killer, but I have come across quite a few people who have dreams, but stop right there…at the dream stage. They convince themselves ‘they’ll get to it one day’ or ‘where they live makes it impossible to take any steps forward’ or ‘they want to grab their dreams, yet they’re not sure if they want to sacrifice their free time to get that hustle in’. So I am with Peaches 100% in feeling that I have a purpose to fulfill; so if you are my friend, romantic interest, business partner – realize that I will do what’s necessary to fulfill my purpose. If you are going to cause detours – you should exit stage left.

If you don’t really like who I am, don’t stick around trying to be nice or keep me around because you might need something later on – just keep it 100% truthful and go about your business. I will HONESTLY understand if we’re just not on the same wavelength; I respect everyone’s right to be different. But if you waste my time, I cannot respect you.

wasting

Because I am so driven (in my professional, spiritual, and romantic life) I have no time to entertain idleness. That’s it. I said it. It still sounds harsh saying (well writing really haha) out loud, but it’s the truth. Back in college I had all the time in the world to learn about people, make my mistakes, and amass a large group of ‘friends’ – hey, you go to college to learn and diversify right!? But once I graduated, I found that I have to be intentional about who I let get close to me. If I know you for a few hours…that does not automatically make you my sis or bro unless we have an instant connection of some sort. Otherwise I need to get to learn you – as you should want to learn me; because if you are a person who has an unclean motive – please don’t be a distraction. Just walk the other way and we’ll leave it at “we’ll do lunch”.

wasting1

Now I’m not going to go on a rant giving the impression that the street does not go two ways. There have been times where I have to admit I have not been totally up front with someone. I wanted to be nice and not step on anyone’s toes, so I’ve been guilty in the past of continuing business and personal relationships though my heart was not 100% in it. I may have strongly disagreed with that person’s morals. Or knew that the guy I was into had some drama and mess with him – basically sticking around giving the other person a false sense of our relationship’s dynamic.

So right now, if anyone who feels I’ve led them on in the past, I honestly from the bottom of my heart apologize and ask for your forgiveness.

These days I try to be as up front and honest with people as possible; even if I have to be the bearer of bad news. I know that when it’s all over, they’ll respect me more for being up front and honest. There have been people who have crossed my path THIS YEAR that I’ve had to give some hard truths to and we’re cool to this very day.

Now that I’m nearing the end of this commentary, I just want to wrap things up by highlighting the main points of this post:

  1. I am at a point in my life where I desire to connect with genuine people. If you want to be my friend for no other reason than to score connections – walk the other way. If you’re a guy who wants to date me to get the skirt, get over your ex, have a photog/writer gf, or for any other shallow reason – quickly exit.
  2. wastingtime1Since I have experienced dealing with people who aren’t genuine, I make sure that I’m as up front with people as possible – even if what I have to say stings.
  3. There aren’t too many things you can be selfish about these days, but one thing I am selfish about is my future. I refuse to have my future derailed, stymied, or knocked off course by any one for any reason. I trip on my on feet, that’s another story; but as far as wasting time allowing someone else to demolish the path God’s set in front of me – NEGATIVE.
  1. I love Peaches for posting this. Peaches keeps it real every second of every day. I’m so glad that I met her (thanks Drea) and so glad she’s around to post truth like this.

Good day all,

– Joc

1 Comment

Filed under Joc's Observations, Quotes To Live By

NEW AUTHOR ALERT! “Memories of My Mommy” by Peaches Dean!

Today I really wanted to share you all the amazing-ness that is Peaches Dean! She’s a friend, client, and spectacular woman all wrapped into one! Last year I had the pleasure of photographing her author’s “corner” photos for her upcoming book “Memories of My Mommy”.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Before and during our shoot, she gave me the breakdown of what inspired her to write the book and who the book was for. This is what she had to say: 

The book is for every girl and even every woman who has lost their mother. [The book is] suitable for boys [as well], but I really want to target young girls ages 4-12. Even though I condensed my very own healing process [into] a 10 page children’s book, it took me almost a year to write it! It was a very uprooting and hurtful/painful process. peaches2

I was 14 when I lost my mother and didn’t begin to heal from it until I was 23. I didn’t even realize how her death alone negatively impacted my relationship with women… and even men. [Since I’ve experienced the loss of my mother and can witness to how God can help heal you], I want to help [other] children [to] trust God to heal them from [any] family deaths they may experience [in their lifetime]. My book will include a small journal section in the back to help children [be interactive in their healing] and remain positive [while working through] the loss of their mother, grandmother, aunt, cousin, or anyone who was near and is near to their heart. “Memories of My Mommy” is only the beginning! 

From the moment she broke everything down to me, I realized just how strong she is; not only for living through such a traumatic experience, but GROWING from it. Being of the Christian faith myself, I know that one of the main attributes that separates us from the rest of the world is HOW we react to events in our lives. Where most people would go crazy, kill someone, or turn to a life of crime…Peaches (while admittedly struggling) ultimately turned to God and allowed Him to heal her from the inside out. He didn’t just put a ‘band-aid’ on it like most of us would do as humans; but He truly healed her AND IS STILL healing her. And perhaps what I love THE MOST about her entire process, is that instead of saying “ok, this has happened to me, thanks Lord for healing me. Amen” – she is taking what she has learned and turned into a physical form of medicine that can help COUNTLESS numbers of other children who may not know God yet or who may be having a hard time coping.

 Ms. Dean has been working tirelessly for over a year to SELF PUBLISH her book and the time has arrived for the world to support and be healed in the process.

peaches1

 Her book “Memories of My Mommy” will be released no later than December 16th, 2013.

So be on the lookout!

It’s not too late to help support Peaches’ efforts !!!

 peaches7

Visit and [LIKE] the Official

“Memories Of My Mommy Facebook Page: 

https://www.facebook.com/MOMMYY?ref=br_tf 

or follow her on Twitter:

@DoinJstPeachy

 

SUPPORT! SUPPORT! SUPPORT!

Leave a comment

Filed under Joc's Observations

Learn to Let Go of The Past

“The only reason it’s hard to “let go” is because we believe the lie that we “need” them. Stop believing that lie….Stop trying to saw ‘sawdust’. Once something is in your past, stop trying to re-open doors God has closed. Some places God is taking you will arrive alone, but not lonely. He is always with you.” – Quentin McCall

Most of you know that I am an avid follower of Quentin McCall. The way he ties in real life application with what the Bible says is uncanny — you can’t help but love it! I know he’s probably been through the storm because the depth and truth that comes from his ‘advice/posts’ hits right at the heart of whatever matter you’re going through relationship wise. If he’s just saying what sounds good….then shoot, he’s doing a good job of keeping up appearances! haha

Tonight he posted the above few quotes and it’s wild how that content ties into the post of CLOSURE that I made earlier today. (well look at God). If you’ve ever dealt with a relationship…saved or not….we’ve all experienced a time in where we just wanted to take a peek into our past to make sure we made the right decision or if that person had changed enough to give the relationship another try. COME ON! ADMIT IT! I’ll be the first to say I have before. That was like the story of my college years. You know that boo you had back in the day or the guy you dated freshman year but reconnected by the time graduation rolled around. YEP, been there done that. Deep down inside you know it’s a waste of time, but you’re single…they’re single…no use in being ‘lonely’ right? So why not.

Thinking on it, I wish I hadn’t. haha BUT hey, what are you gonna do?! — continue to do better, that’s what.

Through years of personal experience and maturation, I’ve come to realize that relationship wise, if it didn’t work 3 years ago, it’s not going to work now. There is always a reason why you breakup with someone in the first place. Very rarely does anything change. Now if it’s like 20 years later that you both meet up and you’re both single, I’ll give you a little rope on that. People actually DO have the ability to change (I feel) over a LARGE period of time. But if you’re talking 1-10 years then NAW…you can keep that relationship behind you boo.

It boggles my mind (now) when friends around my age get caught up in old ‘college routine’ and recycle girlfriends/boyfriends because they’re lonely or meet up and feel like there still may be something there.

If you are now an avid bible reader, regular church goer, stopped drinking, stopped doing drugs and all that jazz — why on God’s green earth would you think it would be worth it to hook back up with your ex (who still does the same stuff). NEGATIVE.

If a girl/guy cheated on you back in high school/college because they were “stupid & not ready to settle”, but miraculously were ready to try again like 5 months later….NEGATIVE run the other way quickly. While people CAN change virtually overnight, it usually involves some traumatic experience or an act of God. Either way, it’s best to stay by yourself and walk the other way.

So Quentin…I feel you on this one my dear! Keep giving the knowledge to the people!

– Joc

WANT TO CATCH UP on the past I made earlier today??  

Leave a comment

Filed under Quotes To Live By, Society and Such